Special Session of the Nevada State Legislature – a catalog of public comment

Photo: Brian Bahouth/the Ally

The 2020 Special Session of the Nevada Legislature began on July 8. Lawmakers are considering ways to soften the impacts of a growing budget deficit in excess of $1 billion for Fiscal Year 2020-21. The options for filling the gap in Nevada’s budget are, according to the Governor, “extremely limited without additional revenue or assistance from the federal government for state budgets.”

Governor Sisolak called a special session and proposed a budget to reflect the downturn in revenue caused by the closure of the state’s gaming industry and other business sectors in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Governor, federal stimulus money from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act is currently supporting Nevada’s economy. Federal relief funds have helped prevent large-scale reductions in state services, but according to the Governor’s proposed budget, “The effects of this stimulus will begin to burn off by late summer. Absent additional federal assistance, a slow recovery, or one in which Nevada lags behind the nation, will exacerbate the current economic and fiscal crises facing the State.”

The Senate and Assembly are meeting as Committees of the Whole. During the first 2 days of the special session, both the Senate and Assembly heard an overview of the General Fund shortfall and budget reduction proposals from the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services and Nevada Department of Education.

On July 8 and 9, lawmakers in both chambers heard hours of public comment.

Follow the links below for discrete audio files of public comment, by name, from each meeting listed.

Assembly Public Comment for Wednesday July 8, 2020

Senate Public Comment for Wednesday July 8, 2020

Assembly Public Comment for Wednesday July 9, 2020

Senate Public Comment for Wednesday July 8, 2020